Updated: May 27
From sorting through travel restrictions to navigating the new COVID safety requirements, travel advisors provide peace of mind.
Few could have predicted the life-changing events of 2020 – a year that saw a global pandemic bring much of the world to a halt almost overnight, particularly the travel industry.
And as we approach the one-year mark of the first diagnosed cases of COVID-19, the travel industry has become something of a patchwork quilt made-up of continued destination closures in some places; stricter entry regulations in others. Some tour operators have consolidated, and many have pivoted to reinvent their adventures to target locals, while also implementing safety protocols to protect their own destinations.
Navigating such an uncertain and complex travel landscape has made the services of experienced travel advisors, once referred to as travel agents, even more essential than ever. A top priority for them now is helping to ensure the health and safety of travelers throughout the entire trip.
Why use a Travel Advisor?
Travel advisors have always been pros when it comes to ensuring that travel is seamless and stress free, but amid today’s rapidly changing travel environment, that role is even more critical and has grown to include keeping track of international border closures and openings, continually evolving traveler requirements, cancellation policies, and safety protocols.
A recent survey from Strategic Vision underscores this point, noting that “in a year marked by cancellations and reschedulings, confusing regulations and innumerable questions, travel advisors showed their clients how valuable they can be. Advisors are sources of advice and inspiration as well as makers (and un-makers) of travel plans.”
Global Family Travels' team has extensive expertise as advisors. Thanks to our global connections and partners, and our US1 host agency Travel Advisor status with Virtuoso, an exclusive network of high-end travel companies with more than 15,000 well-vetted travel suppliers from over 400 independent travel management companies in 34 countries, we have plenty of resources and connections that can be leveraged to help travelers through any situation.
Airlines, Hotel Bookings and More
During the earliest days of the pandemic when destinations and venues began closing suddenly, travelers relied on advisors to restructure their itineraries and revise bookings on a moment’s notice, allowing people to get safely back home amid the unfolding emergency.
This still holds true today. Unlike when you make reservations through an online booking platform, trusted advisors are there to answer your phone calls and emails in emergencies, whether it’s a hotel closing unexpectedly or a destination changing its entry requirements at the last minute.
Getting You Ready for Your Trip, with Safety in Mind!
Yet another key role a travel advisor plays right now is adequately preparing travelers for an upcoming trip, prepping you with regards to new travel health and safety rules and regulations, and documentation requirements that you might overlook or be unaware of.
COVID-19 travel planning is complex and will continue to be so. As destinations begin to open up, like Costa Rica, we know that there are many questions to ponder regarding how to travel. Our team is constantly monitoring the situation as it evolves and remains in contact with our ground operators, air providers, and security team. This important, ongoing communication allows us to compile the advice of experts in order to make factual decisions.
Travel advisors have always made it their business to research and become experts on destinations and this has never been more important. We have detailed knowledge about any processes that may impact your travel experience while the pandemic continues to play out, as well as where to get a COVID-19 test, should you decide to travel abroad in a destination that is open and safe for US travelers to visit.
Travel Expertise to Address Your Concerns
It’s understandable to be a little uneasy about traveling at the moment, or perplexed about whether to book travel for later this year.
As experienced advisors, we at Global Family Travels can help sort through your worries and provide expert travel planning advice and insights about the best destination options, safety matters, and even the refund policies available from hotels, airlines, and more.
Trip Planning and Navigating the New Normal
Booking a trip entirely on your own these days can be fraught with uncertainty. But with our network of contacts around the world, you’re in good hands. We have relationships in a long list of countries.
We have always spent a lot of time on the road ourselves, both at home and abroad, deepening relationships with partners, tour guides, and hotels, all of which we can leverage to make sure you’re in good hands when traveling and will have an amazing and a safe experience.
Silver Linings for Travel on the Road Ahead
Travel as we once knew it has certainly been impacted by the events of 2020 and the industry has been forever changed in significant ways.
But the important thing to remember as a traveler is that not all the changes are for the worse. In fact, in many ways 2020 allowed for an important reset throughout the industry and provided an opportunity for us all to rethink what we want the travel experience to be like and how it can be improved going forward, and to travel with purpose the next time we do.
photo credit: Virtuoso
Travel can and will continue. The post-pandemic economic recovery of many destinations and communities will depend on people traveling again. And with a trusted travel advisor from Global Family Travels in your corner, your next trip can be as memorable, enriching, and rewarding as ever.